Calf Care Quick Tip: Calves Keep Growing

Posted on November 9, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
We track growth when we’re looking at calf performance, but it sometimes slips our mind when it comes to the simple things. Remember, calves grow quickly and the calf jackets and collars (for autofeeders, tethering, etc.) they received on day 1 might not fit as nicely a couple of weeks later. Once a week, make

Video: Calf Chat with Ann – Saying Goodbye to the Warm Days

Posted on November 9, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
In this edition of Starting Strong Calf Chat with Ann, we're reminded that chilly temperatures and lots of snow will be coming our way soon. Ann covers the basics of bedding, nutrition and more as we look to winter.

Virtual Farm Tour: Vir-Clar Farms

Posted on November 9, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Vir-Clar Farms:  A Look Back at the Last Five Years Five years ago, Katie (Boyke) Grinstead jumped headfirst into her lifelong dream.  She returned to her family’s dairy to build the calf operation and raise her kids on the farm. Building success Vir-Clar Farms, LLC is owned and operated by Gary and Rose Boyke.  Their

Designing Calf Starters That Optimize Growth

Posted on November 9, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
We know that feeding starter early in the calf’s life helps develop the rumen and boost performance. But a lot more goes into a good starter than oats, corn, molasses, fat and a pellet. During his presentation at the 2011 Dairy Calf and Heifer Conference, Dr. Mark Hill with Provimi North America shared his insight

Vaccination Not a Substitution for Good Management

Posted on November 9, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Vaccinations can play a valuable role in ensuring calf health in any season. That said, they should never be used as a way to overcome poor management. That’s according to Dr. Chris Chase with the South Dakota State Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences Department. “In general, vaccination is used too much and too often,” Chase said.

Water in the Winter

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Ann Hoskins, Vita Plus Calf Products Coordinator Cold weather is approaching. In order to maximize performance and health, you need to provide the key ingredients, including enough calories, high quality starter and water. Are you prepared to offer water this winter?  Even in cold temperatures, providing free choice water is essential for a successful

Beyond the Barn: Ann’s Top Three Questions from World Dairy Expo

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Ann Hoskins, Vita Plus Calf Products Coordinator The 2011 World Dairy Expo was a great opportunity for me to meet with many of you and learn more about what’s happening on your calf operation.  Here are the top three questions I was asked as we went “around the world of dairy in five days.”

Ask the Expert: Salmonella or respiratory disease?

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Steve Hayes, DVM, Day 1 Technology Q: I am starting to have some high fevers and signs of pneumonia in my younger calves that are still on milk. I am not used to seeing this in such young animals. Is this a Salmonella issue or something else? A: Respiratory disease or pneumonia is

Video: Calf Care Quick Tip – Knee Test for Bedding

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
With this Starting Strong Quick Tip, we recap the steps for good bedding in the winter months.

Calf Precision Milk Replacer

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Vita Plus is pleased to introduce to you the latest product to join our milk replacer line.  Calf Precision is a 24/18 milk replacer designed to captialize on the rapid early growth potential of calves, while allowing a seamless transition to consuming calf starter.  It provides increased nutrients for optimal early growth, improved immune function

Video: Calf Chat with Ann – Managing Summer, Preparing for Fall

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
In this edition of Starting Strong Calf Chat with Ann, we consider the management changes we'll need to implement as we move into fall while still controlling summertime heat and ventilation.

Virtual Farm Tour: MDS Dairy

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
MDS Dairy Focuses on Improvement Through Technology and Teamwork MDS Dairy in western Wisconsin isn’t your average dairy business.  Phil Mlsna owns the farm, which includes two dairies, located in Sparta and Westby, and a total of 2,250 animals. He is also the owner of Mlsna Dairy Supply, Inc., which provides milking equipment, calf feeders,

Video: A Day in the Life of a Calf Raiser – Cathy Speirs, Shiloh Dairy LLC

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
In this edition of Starting Strong A Day in the Life of a Calf Raiser, Cathy Speirs of Shiloh Dairy LLC shares what she and her team do to manage summertime heat and continue to provide calves with optimum care.

Keeping Birds Out Can Help Control Feed Costs

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
With the high cost of feed these days, it is the largest expense in raising dairy heifers. One way to control feed costs is to manage shrink. Shrink is defined as the amount of feed delivered or grown on a farm that is never consumed. Experts estimate that shrink may account for 5 to 30

Optimize Heifer Performance with TMR Management

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Calf raisers invest a lot of time and energy into optimizing calf performance. Good feed management with young heifers can help to keep that momentum going as calves get older. Cody Yanzick, Vita Plus dairy nutritionist, has spent a lot of time helping producers develop their grower programs to meet heifers’ needs. He provides several

Are You Catching and Treating Dehydration Soon Enough?

Posted on November 8, 2012 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Ann Hoskins, Vita Plus Calf Products Coordinator Recognizing and treating dehydration is key to raising healthy calves. Calves will become dehydrated for many reasons, including summer heat and scours. If you can catch dehydration early, supplemental fluids can get the calf on the road to a quicker recovery. A calf’s body contains 75 to